Ideas. Action. Impact. The Washington Institute for Near East Policy The Washington Institute: Improving the Quality of U.S. Middle East Policy

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Employment Opportunities

Since its founding in 1985, The Washington Institute has served as a training ground for future policymakers in both Democratic and Republican administrations. During its quarter-century history, an impressive array of talented scholars has been associated with the Institute. They have gone on to join government and help shape American foreign policy in the Middle East. At the same time, upon completion of their public service, some of the best minds from government are attracted to the Institute. This exchange of ideas and people with the executive branch is very much a part of The Washington Institute's effectiveness.

“The Institute has become a reservoir of talent.”

– Secretary of State Warren Christopher

The Institute's prestigious intern and research assistant programs also provide a pathway for college graduates and graduate students to begin the transformation from young scholar to promising analyst and future policymaker. The Institute is proud of its interns and research assistants -- many of whom go on to serve in government and make their own contributions in the policy world.

Current employment opportunities include Soref Fellow, Research Assistant, Research Intern, and Development Assistant.

The Washington Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Soref Fellow

The Soref fellowship is a one-year research position with full stipend. The fellowship is designed for individuals who have already earned a master's or doctoral degree in U.S. foreign policy or Middle East studies and plan to pursue a career in government, journalism, research, or academia. Soref fellows conduct independent research and acquire first-hand knowledge of U.S. Middle East policymaking. Scholars are asked to contribute written analyses to the Institute's PeaceWatch/PolicyWatch series, while larger research projects may be published as monographs by The Washington Institute.

Application should include professional biography, references, writing sample of scholarly work (e.g., dissertation chapter), policy-writing sample if available (e.g., op-ed), and research proposal. The latter should not exceed 600 words and should highlight both why the topic is of importance to U.S. policymakers, and why the applicant is well qualified to address the topic.
Interested applicants should send a resume and writing sample to:

Dr. Patrick Clawson, Director of Research
The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
1828 L Street NW, Suite 1050
Washington, DC 20036

No phone calls please.

Decisions are typically made in late spring. Applications submitted by June 1 are much preferred.

Research Assistant

The Washington Institute offers a number of research assistantships to college graduates with an interest and background in Middle East affairs. Research assistants support senior scholars and visiting research fellows, participate in The Washington Institute's weekly Policy Forum luncheons, and contribute to the daily operations of the office. Some assistants publish their work as part of the Institute's Research Notes series. Candidates with near-native fluency in Arabic, Farsi, or Turkish receive strong consideration. Research assistantships are full-time, year-long paid positions with benefits beginning in June of each year.

This position is designed for applicants who have obtained their bachelor's degree only. Qualified, graduate-level applicants are encouraged to apply for the Soref fellowship. Interested applicants should send a cover letter and resume by email (please include the phrase "Research Assistant Application" in the subject line) or by post to:

Eric Trager, RA/Intern Program Coordinator
The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
1828 L Street NW, Suite 1050
Washington, DC 20036

No phone calls please.

Applications for 2014-2015 Research Assistant positions are due on February 14, 2014.

Research Intern

Full-time and part-time research internships at The Washington Institute are open to current undergraduates as well as recent graduates with a bachelor's degree. Interns provide research and administrative support to Institute staff. Internships are unpaid.

Interested applicants should send a cover letter and resume by email (please include the phrase "Internship Application" in the subject line) or by post to:

Eric Trager, RA/Intern Program Coordinator
The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
1828 L Street NW, Suite 1050
Washington, DC 20036

Please include your availability in your cover letter. State whether you are available full time, and when you are available to start. Note that while the Institute prefers applicants who can work full time, we occasionally have room for part-time interns.

No phone calls please.

Application deadlines for internship terms:

  • Fall (September to December): July 11
  • Winter/Spring (January to May): November 1
  • Summer (June to August): April 1

Development Assistant

The Washington Institute for Near East Policy is a think tank based in downtown Washington, DC. We are currently seeking to add a sharp, motivated individual to our team in the full-time position of Development Assistant. The Assistant will provide remote support to the regional development directors, along with administrative support to our DC-based team.

Responsibilities include (but are not limited to):

  • Identifying and conducting research on high net worth prospective donors and family and corporate foundations.
  • Writing copy for invitations, introductions, and acknowledgements
  • Assisting with organizing and hosting programs and events, both nationally and regionally
  • Supporting donor relations through indirect means, (mailings, emails, etc.)
  • Providing administrative office assistance
  • Conducting outreach and follow-up, including mailing prospect kits, cold calling, and scheduling meetings
  • Using fundraising database in Raiser's Edge, including data entry and running reports and queries


The Development Assistant position is an excellent opportunity to understand the business operations of a nonprofit organization. There is potential for professional growth from this position on our small, driven team. This position does not require policy or foreign language experience. This position is not a part of the research side of the think tank, though the Assistant may interact with research fellows concerning development needs.

Skills and requirements necessary for success include:

  • BA/BS in development, communications, business or related field
  • Strong administrative support skills
  • Customer service-oriented attitude
  • Ability to work effectively in teams and across organizational lines
  • Self-motivated, adept at multi-tasking and prioritizing work
  • Experience using Microsoft Office suite
  • Top-rate written and verbal communication skills
  • Strength at building and maintaining relationships
  • Meticulous attention to detail
  • Interest in the mission of The Institute and the Middle East region
  • Strong preference given to candidates who have some work experience in a fundraising support role, communications, non-profits, or a related field, including database experience (Raiser's Edge preferred, CVENT helpful).


Full-time employees are offered a generous benefits package that includes health, dental and vision insurance, life and disability insurance, pre-tax commuting benefits, flexible spending accounts, ample paid time off, and retirement savings program.

To Apply:

Submit your cover letter, including your desired salary range, and your resume for consideration by July 20, 2014 at this link only:

The Washington Institute for Near East Policy is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Please no calls or emails.